Saturday, August 21, 2010

Vacation, All I Ever Wanted

Yep, I need a break. Have a lovely last gasp of summer and I'll see you after Labor Day.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Got To Be Real

(It's a little different than what I usually write. I hope you like it.)

FROM: Head of Programming, Bravo
TO: Production, RHOLP
SUBJECT: Episode 2 rough cut.

We continue to be very pleased and excited about “The Real Housewives of Los Pulgas”. The houses look wonderful, the girls have great chemistry and none of their children are grossly overweight. Just a few notes on next week’s episode:

- Whoever thought to take the ladies to a vineyard and lock them in a tasting-room wins employee of the week. As a franchise, we’ve already done boats, limos, a Botox party, a tour bus and a disabled elevator. Now, think creatively. Where else can we trap them in a small room and get them drunk? Is there a logical way to get them in a sweat lodge? Maybe an armored car? At the last meeting, someone mentioned a group therapist with a liquor license. Please look into this.

- Nivea is turning out to be a real find. We can definitely do more with her in the editing room. For example, in her first scene, you cut after she says: “I don’t know why Beth is still so mad at me. She startled me on purpose at the wine-tasting and the gun just went off...” Let’s continue with,”... It was an accident. My God, it was a week ago already, move on!” Hold long enough to see her big eye-roll, THEN cut to last week’s shot of the ambulance pulling away.

- You were right. Starlene’s audition for the Puppies Do Pilates video turned out better than we expected, especially her little fit where she insists the Maltese needs more defined abs. However, in light of her sex tape hitting Perez next week, it starts getting a little awkward at 8:15 to 8:35. If you just tuned in, it’s not entirely clear why she’s massaging that Newfoundland’s quads. Cut it for now, we’ll put it back for the DVD.

- We love how Helaine is being protective of her sister Beth, and she certainly took our notes about keeping up the drama! But Legal insists we cut Helaine’s reference to Nivea having chlamydia of the eye. Legal also wants to fact-check that Nivea did, in fact, transport Mexican heroin and wild parrots in her ass. You can keep the part where she says Nivea used to date her own cousin and made him gay, but lose the rest of the voice-over about how she also dated Ryan Seacrest. It’s a rights issue.

- Keep Beth in long-shots for the next couple of episodes. The gunshot wound isn’t healing as neatly as we had hoped. The Focus Group said it’s starting to look like pizza and we’re talking with Stouffers about a billboard.

- We have the budget to re-shoot Sally-Kate’s confrontation with her ex-husband for better audio. We heard back from his agent/lawyer and he’s available but we still need to keep him 500 yards away from a school or playground.

- Small note: on the HD screener, when Starlene takes some of her “special Chinese herbal vitamins”, my assistant noticed you could read “Dilaudid” on the bottle. Please blur that.

- Don’t give away too much about Bravo’s favorite star-crossed lovers. Just a quick shot of Nivea crouched under Rockland’s hedge and drop in her audio from episode 1 about how they’re meant to be together. This way, we set up week five being all about the restraining order. I have to admit, everyone up here on the 18th floor is rooting for those crazy lovebirds. They’re huge on Twitter.

- We’re still planning to actually meet Helaine’s kids in episode four but Jen from Marketing has a question: Is it too late to change their names? It seems the Focus Group was unanimous that white kids shouldn’t have such black names. We can probably go with Clarque but see what you do with Cholique and Muhshawn. Maybe they have nick-names we can use for the duration. Get back to me on this ASAP.

- I understand the need to explain the sudden switch from the Maybach to the Toyota but the repo truck is a downer. Lose that.

- Speaking of wine, is it possible to get Helaine off the burgundy. My assistant thinks it’s not photographing well. Any flavor of white is fine.

- We have no problem with Sally-Kate saying: “I’ve prayed to God and he doesn’t like Nivea, either.” In fact, let’s use it in the promo, maybe over Sally-Kate threatening Nivea with her crucifix-tiara at the wine-tasting/bikini waxing. Just make sure to cut away before the crucifix actually breaks Nivea’s skin. Everybody has still-frame these days and Business Affairs didn’t get blood clearance for Nivea (they’re working on it now but it won’t be signed in time for this air date). Again, we can put it back for the DVD.

- BTW, if the crucifix-tiara is from Sally-Kate’s Jeweled for Jesus line, we get a product-placement credit on every one she sells. It’s in the agreement. Check with Larry in Merchandising.

Overall, it’s a great episode and we’re thrilled how the season is coming together. The final episode at the knife store promises to be a ratings monster! Did anyone check to see if the store would be okay serving wine?

Monday, August 09, 2010

You Know I'm Bad, I'm Bad (I'm Really, Really Bad)

A few days ago, I was trawling through the old lingerie drawer, grabbed a bra and I thought, “Oh, I have to do laundry.” And then I thought, “Why do I know I have to do laundry?” I realized I had to do laundry because I was holding the Bad Bra. This bra was bought many years ago at Victoria’s Secret, and it promised me it could be worn up to, if I remember correctly, six ways. And, technically, I suppose it can be worn six ways, but all six ways are freakishly unflattering and the strap cuts into one shoulder blade.

Only one. But it's never the same one as the last time I wore it.

Also, I think there’s a rough elastic fiber which has sprung loose and spends the entire day I’m wearing the Bad Bra trying to give me a spinal tap. It is, in sum, an unpleasant experience to wear the Bad Bra. But I can’t throw it away because it’s not a worn-out bra, merely a Bad Bra, and it provides its own service, which is if it’s the one I’m wearing, it motivates me to wash lingerie, a tedious little task which can only be motivated by reminding myself “Yes, but if you do it, the Bad Bra will go away again.”

I did a little research; I asked female friends if they had a Bad Bra. Every woman I know has one. One woman said sheepishly, “I’m wearing it today, which is why I’m wearing a loose-fitting shirt. I swear to God, the Bad Bra causes my breasts to sit lower than when I’m not wearing a bra at all. But it’ll remind me to wash bras tonight.” Another woman I know doesn’t as a rule wear a bra, but she has a Bad Bra she bought years ago as a sop to her now ex-husband, a lingerie fan. Her Bad Bra involves a lot of lace and a padded cup which apparently wants to ride up and cover her chin. Her Bad Bra exists to remind her she still hates bras and possibly her now ex-husband. And yet, she still doesn’t throw it away.

In fact, not only do all women I know own Bad Bras, they own Tragic Underwear, underwear with the flaccid, grey, unflattering contours of a shroud, with just about as much fabric. Our Tragic Underwear is useful but, also much like a shroud, when you’re in them, things aren’t going all that well in your life. And yet right after admitting they own said Tragic Underwear or Bad Bra, not one single woman then said, “You know, now that you’ve brought it up, I really should throw out any underwear which makes me feel fat, sad and itchy.” Most women seem to accept the misfit toys of their underwear drawer as some kind of karmic retribution for previous misdemeanors. Or they forget to throw them out and then the drawer is nearly empty and look! The hot-pink strapless bra and the droopy bloomers await you!

Readers, play along at home. Do you have a Bad Bra? Do you have Tragic Underwear? Did you ever actually get up the nerve to throw away underwear which had committed no greater sin than being dreadful? And do men have Tragic Underwear?

I assume certain men have Bad Bras, and if they wish to write about them, I think we’d all love to hear about it.